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Photo: The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel kicks off the season with the annual holiday open house and tree lighting on Sunday, November 21. Photo: Pacific Dream Photography

The Ritz-Carlton Announces Holiday Happenings

Guests and the local community can gather and rejoice this holiday season with oceanfront festivities at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel. The resort welcomes a return of the hotel’s seasonal experiences including holiday dining, gingerbread house decorating, afternoon tea, and more.

Sparkling decorations light up the property, with a variety of memorable experiences beginning on Saturday, November 20, until the New Year.

The resort kicks off the season with the annual Holiday Open House and Tree Lighting on Sunday, November 21, co-hosted by General Manager Karen Chastain and KTLA Channel 5’s Wendy Burch. Festivities begin at 4 p.m., including live holiday music performed by The Jeeps; a special appearance from Santa Claus; and the official lighting of the 40-plus-foot decorated tree from the Pacific Northwest. Holiday cookies and hot chocolate are complimentary, with additional beverages available for purchase. Guests are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy for donation to Miracles for Kids; canned goods and non-perishable food items to benefit the Orange County Rescue Mission; and pet toys and treats for local pet shelters. The event is free.

The SANDsational Extravaganza unveils large-scale sand sculptures by local sand architects Archisand Professional Sand Sculptors, Inc. Located in the lobby, this year’s theme highlights the resort’s holiday community footprint partners including Surfers Healing, Canine Companions, Miracles for Kids, and the Orange County Rescue Mission. An artistry backdrop will be painted and designed by the hotel’s Executive Sous Chef Steven Wan. On display Saturday, November 20 to Sunday, January 2, 2022.

The Gingerbread House and Holiday Cookie Decorating event invites guests to gather with family and friends on December 5 and Dec. 12, from 2 to 4 p.m., to decorate their very own large-scale gingerbread house and holiday cookies. The talented pastry team will be on hand to provide tips and tricks for creating a gingerbread showpiece of the season. Cost is $250 per gingerbread house. To reserve, guests can call Guest Services at 949.240.2000 or register online via OpenTable.

Enjoy the timeless tradition of Afternoon Tea at RAYA, featuring an array of tea, savory canapés, and sweet bites in an elegant ocean view setting. Available Monday through Thursday, November 29-December 16, with seating from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m., and $95 per person. Reserve in advance by calling Guest Services at 949.240.2000. For Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s dining, families and friends can enjoy holiday dining at RAYA, enoSTEAK, and the resort’s buffets.

Families and children are invited to celebrate with tales of the holidays. Storytelling is held in the Eco-Adventure Center and read by Santa Claus on Friday and Saturday, December 10, 11, 17, and 18 at 5 p.m. and complimentary to attend. Guests are encouraged to bring a new children’s book for donation to Miracles for Kids.

For more information, visit ritzcarlton.com/lagunaniguel.

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